Doctorate in Business Administration

Doctor of Business Administration DBA

Course fees (2018/19 entry)

Option / fee Value
Home/EU full-time annual tuition fee: 
Home/EU part-time tuition fee: £10,475 & £4,000 writing up fee
International full time annual tuition fee: £11,900 & £4,000 writing up fee

Course type



Liverpool Business School

Study mode

Part Time

About your course

The Liverpool Business School provides existing senior executives and business leaders with the academic support and expertise to produce a specialised piece of consultancy, in direct dialogue with their existing commercial connections and expertise.

  • Part-time DBA studied over three to seven years
  • Qualification can be completed alongside full-time employment
  • Equivalent to a PhD
  • Liverpool Business School has an excellent reputation in external research and collaborative ventures with partners across a range of sectors in the UK and internationally
  • Close links with business and employers

Staff are actively engaged in research encompassing finance, marketing, international business, e-government, HRM, performance management, knowledge management, sustainability and much more.

LJMU has a reputation as one of the top business schools in the world. The University provides an inspirational learning experience with the highest quality of lecturers, doctoral conferences, training programmes, e-library, visiting business leaders and candidates from around the world.

Binu Varghese, current DBA student

Introduction to the School

The Liverpool Business School is a forward looking, professional, business school, active globally as well as locally. We maintain close links with business and place students at the centre of all that we do.

We offer a diverse range of high quality undergraduate, postgraduate and research based programmes covering all aspects of business and management. With expertise particularly in finance, marketing, public relations, information management and human resources, LBS has a strong reputation in external research and in collaborative ventures with partners across a range of sectors in the UK and internationally.

Whether you have just finished your degree, are currently in employment or are returning to study after a break, our postgraduate and professional programmes will enhance your academic and professional development.

Why study this course at LJMU?

Join a cohort of senior professionals and apply your research directly to the needs of your business, driving forward organisational progress without putting your learning or your business on hold. You will contribute to commercial and academic knowledge and, upon graduation, will possess a specialist range of problem solving and decision making strategies that will take you to the next level of success.

The programme team’s research interests reflect the wide-range of knowledge and skills that constitute DBA study.

Staff are actively involved in research spanning business areas ranging from finance to marketing, international business to e-government, human resource development to performance management and knowledge management to sustainability.

Liverpool Business School is a member of the Executive DBA Council (EDBAC) and, as such, we believe in fostering excellence and innovation in executive doctoral degree programs.

Programme outline and structure

This Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) provides senior executives and managers with the opportunity to achieve the highest academic degree while remaining in full time employment. Equivalent to a PhD qualification, the DBA is ideal for those pursuing a professional career.

The DBA will enhance not only your ability to develop new knowledge, but also the ability to apply that knowledge to a professional context, thereby making a real and tangible impact on individuals and organisations. It will also equip you with the necessary skills to carry out rigorous research, while providing the flexibility to carry out individual projects that impact on your organisation and industry.

The programme is aimed at senior, experienced professionals who are qualified in their own areas of professional practice. It will also appeal to managers who are looking for a challenge and want to pursue the highest academic qualification that will lead to new areas of professional practice. Your employing organisation will directly benefit from your research, gaining valuable and objective feedback plus the opportunity for major consultancy.

What you will study on this degree

Please see guidance below on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.

Level 7/8:
  • Planning module
  • Investigative project
  • Reflective module
  • Leadership
  • Project management
  • Managing finance
  • Marketing management
  • Managing process and operations
  • Research methods for management
  • Strategic management
  • Change and knowledge management
  • MBA in executive leadership dissertation
  • Managing information
  • MBA EL leader impact project
  • MBA in executive leadership thesis

Further guidance on modules

The information listed in the section entitled ‘What you will study’ is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules. Additionally, option modules may be offered subject to meeting minimum student numbers.

Academic Framework reviews are conducted by LJMU from time to time to ensure that academic standards continue to be maintained.

Please email if you require further guidance or clarification.

How will I be assessed?

The assessment for Stage 1 is the Learning Agreement which defines the rationale, outline plan, research strategy and draft literature review for the project(s) undertaken at Stage 2. You will need to keep a reflective diary throughout the programme.

The assessment for Stage 2 is a substantial piece of individual work in the form of a report, portfolio or journal articles (of publishable quality in a peer reviewed academic journal), including a reflective piece which links the results of the research to application and professional practise. The assessment will be in the form of an oral examination of the project (viva voce).

Two individual examiners will be appointed for each stage 2 viva, one of whom must be external. The Programme External Examiner may take part in the viva in an advisory capacity.

Staff research interests

Liverpool Business School is home to a vibrant and active research community who are committed to innovation and excellence in research.

Our research is concerned with important contemporary business and management issues, it is multidisciplinary in practice and reflects the School’s areas of special expertise. This approach is evident not only in our research but in PhDs and in some of the taught courses we offer or have designed for clients. Our main areas of research expertise include:

  • entrepreneurship and small businesses
  • public management
  • evaluation research
  • research with practitioners

Our expertise in Entrepreneurship is based on research specifically in this area, including the specialist topics of rural entrepreneurship, sustainability and graduate start-ups.

Our Centre for Public Services Management helps us to focus our research expertise in public management, and we work with public bodies regionally and elsewhere to build our research base and put theory into practice.

Entry requirements (Home)

Candidates should be well-qualified in their chosen field and possess a business related Masters degree (e.g. MBA) or equivalent qualification supplemented with sufficient recent business and management experience appropriate to the research being undertaken. 

To be considered for the programme, candidates must complete the online application form and provide the following documents:

  • Completed application form
  • Master’s degree certificate
  • Transcript of master study
  • 1 Academic reference
  • 1 Reference from current employer
  • Evidence of Language - IELTS 6.5 (or CEF B2) with no components score below 5.5 (if required).
  • A personal statement (1500-2000 words) to include:
    • Reasons why you want to study DBA course
    • Reasons why you are suitable to the course
    • Previous experience of research
    • Brief introduction of your research to include:
      • Title of your research
      • Introduction of the research
      • Literature review of current studies
      • Research method
      • Contributions of your research

The deadline for applications for January 2018 entry, will be 30th November 2017.

Should you have any queries regarding the entry criteria or documents required, please contact the Faculty Admissions Office at busadmiss​​.

Entry requirements (International)

LJMU welcomes applications from international students. In addition to normal entry requirements, you will be expected to demonstrate a very good level of English language competence, for example an IELTS score of 6.0-6.5 or equivalent. Please note: specific courses may require higher levels of English language competence.

For UK visa requirements, please contact the UK Entry Clearance or contact LJMU's International Advice Team: 

Will I be interviewed?



6.5 (Minimum of 5.5 in each component)


58-64 (Min. 51 in each component for UKVI Purposes)

Is RPL accepted on this programme?


Please Note: All international qualifications are subject to a qualification equivalency check via NARIC.

Financial support

Tuition fees

All students enrolled on postgraduate taught programmes at LJMU are liable to pay an annual tuition fee. You can opt to pay your tuition fees in full at the start of each academic year or in instalments. If you need advice about how to pay your tuition fees, please email LJMU’s Student Funding Team.

Funding sources

There are many ways to fund postgraduate study for home and international students. From Postgraduate Masters Loans and Professional and Career Development Loans (PCDLs) to International Scholarships and subject-specific funding, you’ll find all of the information you need on our specialist postgraduate funding pages.

    Graduate employment

    The DBA leads to a D-level (Doctorate) qualification but offers added value in terms of structure, delivery and your own experience while studying on the programme.

    If you are employed during the course of your DBA, you will probably undertake research which directly links to your employer’s area of business. This will be of great benefit to you and your employer, particularly if you are focused on a large-scale project. 

    Previous students have found that the research undertaken during their DBA has helped them gain valuable and objective feedback which has essentially provided their employers with high levels of focused, internal consultancy.

    International Study

    International applicants are required to demonstrate equivalent qualifications to the standard requirements for entry when applying for courses at LJMU.

    Students must also demonstrate a proficiency in communicating through English, for example via an IELTS tests or equivalent.

    Please note: UK visa restrictions mean that international students are only permitted to study on a full-time basis.

    Please contact LJMU’s International Team by visiting for more information and advice.


    LJMU has launched a range of generous international scholarships for students enrolling at the University.

    These prestigious scholarships take the form of tuition fee waivers and are available for outstanding international students applying for taught postgraduate programmes and research degrees.

    You will need to complete an additional application form in order to be considered for these scholarships. Full eligibility criteria and the online application form are available here:

    Applications for these scholarships are welcomed from:

    • new international applicants
    • current LJMU international students hoping to progress onto postgraduate study at the University
    • LJMU international alumni

    The University may make changes to a programme of study or module where such changes are deemed to be beneficial to students, are minor in nature and unlikely to impact negatively upon students or become necessary due to circumstances beyond the control of the University.
    Further guidance on programme changes

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